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Saint Paul College A Community & Technical College

​Community Awards

Each year the Community Partner of the Year award honors an individual or an organization for their role in helping Saint Paul College students succeed. Our 2021 Community Partner of the Year is Ujamaa Place.

Ujamaa Place

Laura Beeth, Vice President Talent Acquisition, Fairview Health Services

Ujamaa Place provides holistic transformation for young African-American men experiencing inequity at the intersection of race and poverty. We help them achieve brotherhood, stability and personal success.

Since opening its doors in 2010, Ujamaa serves primarily African American men aged 18-30 from the Twin Cities seven-county metropolitan area, who enroll at no cost in Ujamaa Place’s Theory of Transformation™, providing them with over 37 transformation support services to build positive lives for themselves and to move into contributing roles in society.

Under the leadership of CEO Otis Zanders, Ujamaa Place has successfully transformed over 5,000 men and has maintained a 4% recidivism rate, compared to 68% nationally, according to the National Institute of Justice.

Ujamaa Place has sent its clients to Saint Paul College for customized training courses and other credit courses for many years. A Ujamaa Men Scholarship also reduces barriers for achieving educational goals. Watch this video about the partnership Saint Paul College has with Ujamaa Place.

We welcome your nominations of those who have served and contributed to the success of Saint Paul College and our students. We are accepting nominations for this award for 2022, and will recognize the recipients at our Friends on the Lawn event on May 21, 2022. Further details about the nomination process are outlined below and can also be found by viewing the Community Partner of the Year Award Nomination form.

Nomination Process

  • The Friends of the College Award honors individuals and community partner organizations for outstanding service and dedication to Saint Paul College.
  • Candidate must have demonstrated significant service to the College in at least two of the following areas:
    • Member of a Program Advisory Committee
    • Member of the President’s Advisory Council
    • Member of the Friends of Saint Paul College Board of Directors
    • Strong record of hiring Saint Paul College students and alumni
    • Contributed to Saint Paul College financially or through in-kind donations
    • Served as a mentor for Saint Paul College students
    • Partnership with Saint Paul College on grants or other programs to advance the College’s mission
    • Community, state or federal leadership
  • A committee appointed by the President of Saint Paul College will review the nominations and make the final selection of the recipient.
Past Community Partner of the Year Recipients

We are grateful to these exemplary individuals and institutions for their unwavering support, contributions and service to our programs and students. Here are our past recipients:

Community Partner of the Year Recipients

  • James Staloch, 2007
  • Howard Guthmann, 2008
  • David Berg, 2009
  • Councilmember Daniel Bostrom, 2010
  • President Emeritus Donovan Schwichtenberg, 2011
  • International Institute of Minnesota, 2014
  • Mayor Chris Coleman, 2015
  • Karin McCabe, 2016
  • Representative Alice Hausman, 2017
  • Laura Beeth, 2018
  • Greg Buck, 2019
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